My first chance to use a camera was when I attended the Filmmaking Summer Session at the North Carolina School of the Arts in Winston-Salem, NC. I made no friends and one terrible, terrible film full of horrible choices. They play it now for incoming students to show you what not to do (never cast yourself). That same Summer Session I had the opportunity to edit someone else's film, and that was when I realized how the whole filmmaking process could actually work--when I fit the pieces together.
My main focus before that summer was sculpture. I grew up in an environment where any form of artistic expression was encouraged, and I had a lot of exposure to art and design from a young age, particularly glass art.
After film school, there was still a lot of learning to do. Just fumbling around trying to figure out how to make the process work, especially with lighting. Once I started seeing results I liked, I became more comfortable with experimentation. I've shot about 7 features since then, most of which made it to Redbox.
These days I do my best to learn from the masters of the craft: Roger Deakins, Robert Elswitt, Emmanuel Lubezki, or from whatever I'm currently watching. Sunlight can often be a great inspiration. I'm a big fan of dramatic, low-key noir lighting, with lots of harsh shadows and shapes. Often style is dictated by resources: how much time do I have, how much equipment, how many people, to pull off a given look.
I'm always experimenting with lighting for any and all subjects. The idea of capturing physics in action in front of a camera, though smoke and light and dust and water and fog, continues to fascinate me and inspire new work.
More importantly I am invested in my clients. As a photographer, your success is my success. I make sure every client receives work they love and are proud to share.